TORONTO, Feb. 13, 2013 /CNW/ - In response to a petition by the Center for Science in the Public Interest regarding caloric sweeteners in beverages, the Canadian Beverage Association issued the following statement:
"Research shows clearly that no one single food or beverage can be linked to obesity, and scientific evidence does not support that sugar, in any of its various forms, is a unique cause of health conditions such as obesity, diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular disease or metabolic syndrome. In fact, the Canadian government looked at fats, carbohydrates, protein and fibre in the diet and concluded 'it is not what you eat, but rather, how much - the total number of calories consumed -that significantly contributes to obesity.' Linking sugar causally to these issues is an oversimplification and helps no one.
The facts in Canada are:
- The Canadian Community Health Survey shows that less than 2.5 per cent of the calories in Canadian diets come from soft drinks, with over 97.5 per cent coming from other sources.
- Soft drink consumption has declined by 32 per cent in the past 12 years, according to Statistics Canada.
- The beverage industry is committed to providing a variety of products for every lifestyle and occasion through an expanding portfolio of low-and no-calorie beverages as well as regular beverages in smaller portion sizes.
- With the launch of Clear on Calories, beverage companies have voluntarily added calorie labels to the front of all their packages, making it easier than ever for consumers to know how many calories are in their beverage choice before making a purchase.
- In 2004 Canadian beverage companies voluntarily launched Guidelines for the Sale of Beverages in Schools which removed full-calorie soft drinks from all schools and replaced them with lower-calorie choices and in elementary and middle schools product selection was limited to water, milk or 100 per cent unsweetened juices in a smaller package.